Sea claims what man can no longer cradle
but time’s tales can be freed from nasty nets
when the wreck is beyond want, when the cable
has been cut and we come to the call of the current.
Rough becomes rust becomes wrecked becomes ruin,
might becomes memory. Day is done but night unfolds
tales of tides that were tamed, slim seas that harboured
heavy hopes in trusted holds. We dive and then differ
on the return, are undone, unmasked, back to bone-
a battered beauty, once a witness to the wild waves.


All words and photographs by Damien B Donnelly

Written as part of the Cobh Writers and Readers #PoetryPrompt featured on Twitter. Do drop by and join in the creative distraction. @CobhWR



  1. Beautiful, haunting image and poetry, Damien. I was intrigued by the repeated patterns of alliteration, sometimes in pairs, e.g. “nasty nets,” “call of the current,” “slim seas,” etc.; sometimes in triples, e.g. “tales of tides that were tamed,” “witness to the wild waves,” etc; and my favorite line with a quadruple, “Rough becomes rust becomes wrecked becomes ruin.” There is a kind of rhythm in the poem that reminds me of waves breaking on the shore.

    • I’m such a fan of alliteration, I have to keep paring it down for fear of overuse like exclamation marks!!! !
      There sea is not very far from us here, a little walk down a few lanes so it’s lovely to be there and find it’s peace way over you

      • Water definitely has therapeutic properties for the soul. I hope you did not mind my analyse de texte–I spent an enormous amount of time during my college days analyzing French literature. Even today I enjoy deconstructing literature and examining art to understand what the author or artist actually did and how and why I reacted in the way that I did. I personally find that more useful than simply saying that I like it and moving on.

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